Electric power system functioning normally – consumption over 14,000 MW today

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment 5.1.2017 13.00 | Published in English on 5.1.2017 at 17.07
Press release
Electric power system functioning normally – consumption over 14,000 MW today

Today's freezing cold weather caused Finland's power consumption to rise to the year's highest level. On 5 January 2017 between 8am and 9 am consumption was 14,042 MV. However, the electrical system is functioning in a normal manner, and the market price for electricity is quite low for today at an average of 44 euros per Mwh. This illustrates that there is still unused capacity in the Nordic market and in Finland.

Approximately 70% of power consumption was covered with domestic production and approximately 30% with imports from neighbouring countries. According to an estimate by Fingrid, which operated the power system, consumption will rise this afternoon to 14,500 MW. It is estimated that, tomorrow, consumption will be notably smaller than today.

Until now, the highest peak demand in Finland as an average for one hour was measured on 7 January 2016 between 5pm and 6pm when consumption was 15,105 MW. The system also functioned normally at that time.

Risk of power shortage in Finland is small – Finland well-prepared for possible power shortages

The possibility of Finland experiencing a power shortage is quite small at this time. A power shortage could result from a combination of numerous factors, if during a period of sub-zero temperature Finland's own production capacity were not sufficient to cover peak consumption at peak consumption hours and at the same time there were significant disruptions simultaneously in electricity transfer and at power plants in both electricity production and import.

Finland is well-prepared for a power shortage. Authorities, the electricity transmission system operator and distribution network operators have drawn up a set of instructions on how to operate in the event of a power shortage.

Fingrid uses a three-step procedure when the balance between electricity consumption and production reaches its limits: strained power balance, power shortage, serious power shortage.

If we were to experience a power shortage, Fingrid would request the distribution network operators to implement measures that would limit consumption. These would be implemented for a limited number of customers for a few hours at a time. Power outages would be carried out in a way so society's most important functions would not be in their scope of impact. The amount of limitations would be approximately two per cent of Finland's total consumption.

Additional information can be found at:

State of Finland's power system (can also be found in mobile app stores under Fingrid online): http://www.fingrid.fi/en/electricity-market/power-system/Pages/default.aspx

A variety of tips on how to conserve electricity can be found (in Finnish) on the Motiva website at: http://motiva.fi/koti_ja_asuminen/nain_saastat_energiaa/vinkkeja_pakkasiin_varautumiseen/ 

Further information:

Tatu Pahkala, Senior Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 (0) 29 506 4217 or +358 50 396 1285